Mike Rathbuns installation at King Street Station from last years Seattle Art Fair.
Mike Rathbun's installation at King Street Station from last year's Seattle Art Fair. Malcolm Smith

Although it's six months away, planning for the third annual Seattle Art Fair—led for the second year by artistic director Laura Fried—is well under way. Last year's event drew more than 18,000 people, up from the first year's 15,000-plus. SAF—which is presented by AIG and happens August 3-6 at CenturyLink Field Event Center's WaMu Theater—just announced its dealer committee.

The committee includes Lidia Andich (Gagosian Gallery), Robert Goff (David Zwirner), James Harris (James Harris Gallery), William Hathaway (Night Gallery), Greg Kucera (Greg Kucera Gallery), and Elizabeth Sullivan (Pace Gallery). The reappearance of Gagosian—one of the world's biggest galleries—is posited a major coup for the event's planners, because it wasn't represented at last year's SAF, even though it showed up at the inaugural event.

As Jen Graves wrote in The Stranger about the 2016 Seattle Art Fair:

I've been to fairs around the world, and this is a good one. Max Fishko and Jeff Wainhause of Art Market Productions, the producers of the fair, are organized, committed, and decent. [Paul] Allen's company Vulcan has provided support for the fair and an artistic director who programmed talks, mini-exhibitions within the fair (including by Seattle's Jeffry Mitchell), and free music and dance performances out in the city...

Here's what an art fair needs to survive: sales. Here's why Seattle Art Fair deserves a fighting chance: Because in only two years, it has expressed perfectly the tension, as Eastside native/Sleater-Kinney riot grrrl/Portlandia star Carrie Brownstein put it, between the ambition of this region and its ambivalence toward its own ambition...

In a press release, director Max Fishko said, “The third year of any fair is a benchmark, and we’re thrilled to enter ours with an incredible level of interest from collectors and groups all over the country, and the world. Our sponsors are returning, we’re welcoming another top-notch dealer committee that will help us activate the broader art world, and are expecting tremendous turnout.”